LAS CRUCES, NEW MEXICO — George Tovar continues to impress as a young professional fighter. On Friday night at the Pan American Center, Tovar made it four straight wins to start his career, all four by knockouts.
For the first time, he extended himself past the first round, but just barely. After a crushing left hook to the body against veteran Tavorus Teague sent him down near the end of the first round, Tovar ended Teague’s misery seconds into the second round with another left hook to the body and it didn’t take long before referee Rocky Burke signaled the fight was over.
“I felt strong and saw the opportunity to end the fight right there,” Tovar said. “My right hand felt great. I had injured it earlier this year, but I was ready to go and felt strong.”
Tovar dominated the first round by boxing soundly, using his overall good boxing skills to set up the body punches that Teague did not like.
“I wanted to use my boxing skills and show my power and was able to do that,” Tovar said. “It feels too good to be 4-0. I had great support from the fans in the arena and lifted me up. I had a great camp, I felt I came in great shape.”
Tovar has been fighting mostly at 165 pounds or higher, but the hope is to eventually move down to the middleweight level of 160. He hopes to be back in the ring as soon as next month.
Great night for Han
Stephanie Han was impressive in making it a perfect 2-0 in her pro career. The former national champion as an amateur, who took several years off to raise a family and enter law enforcement, took a risk in fighting Austin’s Destiny Joneswho was 2-0 and a former national amateur champion.
But with risk comes reward if it works out and Han won a four-round unanimous decision by outworking Jones with plenty of straight right hands. She also kept the aggressive Jones from finding any offensive rhythm.
“She followed the game plan perfectly,” said Han’s trainer, Louie Burke. “She fought smart and she was ready to go.”
Han won her pro debut last October but since that win had several fights canceled.
“I stayed as sharp as I could in the gym, trained hard and stayed motivated,” she said. “My goal is to be a world champion like my sister Jennifer and be a good pro like by brother Abie. I want to stay busy, I’ll even fight an MMA fight if I have to. I’m happy with my showing.”
Las Cruces fighters win
Three Las Cruces fighters won their fights in impressive fashion.
Junior middleweight Garrett Lopez stopped Albuquerque’s Anthony Jones in the second round with a nice array of combinations and smart boxing. Lopez had a strong two-fisted attack from the start of the fight and kept Jones off balance before stopping him for his first career win in three attempts.
Heavyweight Elijah Sweat was too quick and a much busier fighter than Antonio Matos of Clovis, New Mexico, in a battle of pro debuters. Sweat was aggressive with his body attack and kept Matos on the ropes for a large portion of the fight and won 40-36 on all three scorecards.
In another heavyweight fight JD Ordunez wore down Nick Tipton of Midland and stopped him with one second left in the third round. Tipton started strong in the first round and part of the second, but Ordunez took the fight over with good work to the head and floored Tipton in the second. In the third, it was all Ordunez, who won his first professional fight.
Texas fighter impressive
In a battle of pro boxing debuters, Plainview’s Mike Bueno stopped El Paso’s Nick Hernández at 2:47 of the second round in a lightweight fight. Bueno was down in the first round but controlled the second round with several good right crosses and good combinations before Hernandez could not continue after a barrage of punches.
Boxing was something Bueno has long wanted to do after recovering from stage 3 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. He was diagnosed in 2015 but went into remission and the cancer was gone in 2017.
“The doctor said I’d never fight again,” Bueno said. “That inspired me and I used my faith and hard work to get to where I’m at. I’ve competed in MMA and have my own gym in Plainview. This win was special, this is important to me and my family. I love boxing, I’ve always been a great fan of the sport.”
The 38-year-old Bueno is also a Navy veteran and hopes this win propels him into bigger fights.
“I love what I do and I want to prove I can continue to be successful in this sport even at my age,” he said.
Felix F. Chavez may be reached at 915-546-6167; [email protected]; @Fchavezeptimes on Twitter.